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[Mainland Chinese Drama 2018] The Rise of Phoenixes 凰权·弈天下


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Hi, thank you for starting this topic, I found #trop drama fully inadvertently, never seen trailers or news about it ,whatsoever. I was just skimming  Netflix and found #trop title and thumbnail gave sort of dark cues and looked intriguing. Then that’s that, it’s now one of favorites.

I’ve read many comments about #trop, mostly about slow paced at beginning, but in my humble opinion, it is how the script wants to introduce our main leads, NingYi and ZhiWei. The cues are too strong, first impression their characters are gravely tricky and complex. Both NingYi and Zhiwei  simply child prodigy, they scheme things at their very young age. NingYi acts a strategist at the age of 8. While Zhiwei if you all notice in episode 2, she fakes her tears in front of many people so that her family allowed to stay in her uncle house, she’s just 8 yo too I guess. I truly love these sort of equal male and female leads.   It reminds me one of my favorites manga characters Tsukushi and  Domyoji from Hana Yori dango. 

So, at the end of day, #trop drama is a hq content. Some fans probably dislike the sad ending, some fans are ok, I guess I’m the second one. 

As for me, usually I have second male lead syndrome, when the story has many love interests, but ChenKun just awes me from  episode 1 to 70. Probably because he has more scenes than the other competitors or he’s just too hot to handle  ^^ (squeal). NiNi also cool, she’s lovely and cute, she’s no Barbie girl look, but she has a fresh look, and she portrays Zhiwei very well. 

Ps: im still waiting English translation for the novel,,,patiently ^^

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I'm going through Phoenixes very slowly and am only up to Episode 20. Life's busy and one can only do what one is able.  Fascinating show and as a whole I find it worth persevering through. When it's

If there is anyone who is 100% fluent in Chinese, please make corrections to this! I had trouble translating since a lot of the lyrics draw from ancient poetry. Chinese also doesn't have tenses and in

I think somewhere down the the director forgot that this is called the RISE of the FREAKIN PHOENIXES, not the FALL of the FREAKIN PHOENIXES.     

2 hours ago, morganian said:

As per discussion above, I think culturally and historically 'I like you' is extremely blunt and forward already. 'Please be my first wife' would have been more appropriate and just having one wife (no concubines) would demonstrate the depth of feeling. 'Please be my Empress' is really pushing it to the next level and demonstrates a desperate and selfish love without thought for the consequences.

 

Ning Yi's displays of affection are so reserved compared to Helian Z's. Helian is extremely forward...which, in the context of the show, hint at him being barbaric, an outsider, uncultured, etc. I think, this is one small reason why FZW cannot take him seriously (even before she is full-on in love with NY). 

 

And then, compare this to Gu Nanyi's affection. He loves FZW, but he makes it something more appropriate for his station. Apart from the initial 'perving on my mistress while she's in her PJs', he keeps it pretty G-rated after that.

 

Thoughts?

I love the comparison between Helian Zheng and Ning Yi.

 

I remember at the beginning Helian Zheng was looking down at the people of Tiansheng. He stated their women were weak as well as their men. And it is indeed true. In Tiansheng, courtesy is valued more than prowess. The way they bow alone shows how Tiansheng demands servitude and exaltation whilst Jinshi demands honor and pride.

 

To be honest, the Kingdom of Jinshi is a much better place for Zhiwei. Their women were treated better and could become warriors. The fact that the Empress sister had the audacity to accuse someone of almost raping her and having that person destroyed despite being a noble is something I did not know can happen in the past. Men's words were usually more valued than that of a woman, unless the man is of low status. Especially not if they were both engaged, they would probably just be forced to marry each other.

 

Zhiwei as an Empress of Jinshi could also lead an army. I cannot imagine an emperor of Tiansheng allowing something like that. Not even Ning Yi, especially not if it would be Zhiwei. oh no. No way in heck she would be able to convince him of that. Maybe if he was chained into a post and there was no other way to save the kingdom. lol. But he would probably cut off his limbs to free himself before he would allow it. :D Unless if he was sure it was relatively safe, maybe... but you know what, he did intend to send her to Minhai alone before... so maybe... but I just don't see it happening.

 

But Helian Zheng did not seem barbaric or uncultured to me. He was less smart, that is for sure. Although I would understand that most women in Tiansheng would think Helian Zheng is barbaric, Zhiwei is quite different from most women. I think had she not been preoccupied with other thoughts, he might fascinate her a bit. Zhiwei is quite forward thinking. I think Helian Zheng might have had a chance of winning Zhiwei simply because he treated her more like an equal (later on) than Ning Yi did. And I don't think Zhiwei was averse to someone who was open to their feelings as she was quite open with her affections herself and had been baiting Ning Yi to open up.

 

Even at the beginning, you can see that she was actually free at touching him and holding his arm when pleading for something, that Ning Yi was the one shocked at her forwardness. Even when they were already together, Ning Yi was the reserved one, hesitating to hold her and all that while she leans on him so easily. She was also the one who grabbed his hand on the streets to hold it. So I doubt, any expressive emotion would feel "barbaric" to Zhiwei.

 

But what really amazes me is how manly Ning Yi can be compared to Helian Zheng when he looked a lot more fragile. Ning Yi was like a dark prince and a fairy at the same time. lol. In the end, he was fiercer than Helian Zheng. Helian Zheng came and acted like a lion but turned out to be a cat. In terms of being "barbaric", Ning Yi killed two people in cold blood by his own hands (Chan Hai and Zhongyi) without any remorse. He ordered the death of the crowned prince and cut off Zhongxin's head. Whilst Helian Zheng was so worried about his little brother who got kidnapped. (In all fairness, it was quite an unfair assessment in Zhiwei's part, as had Ning Ji been the crowned prince, I doubt Ning Yi would have plotted against him. And had Ning Ji been kidnapped, I am sure NIng Yi would have worried about him too)

 

Ning Yi was like a whirlwind. When he sets something into motion he never stops. Helian Zheng was so tame compared to him.

 

I think Zhiwei was attracted to both Ning Yi's darkness and light. Even at the beginning when he acted like he just wanted to be a commoner, Zhiwei already gauged that he had ambition and that he would not settle for less. She had no illusions about who Ning Yi was. But even though she was somewhat scared of it, she was also drawn to it. 

 

As for Gu Nanyi... for some reason he never had any romantic vibes for me. Even when Zhiwei undressed on the carriage, the moment felt awkward instead. He was like a brother. Even brothers turn around when their sisters are in a state of undress. I know, because I tease my teenage brother about it all the time.

 

WOW! I wrote an essay!!!

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On 10/21/2018 at 2:39 AM, Pollen Ainne said:

It is so weird that I find everything you said perfect and yet proves more to me how bland Ning Qi was. I actually stated it before how I found the "character" itself interesting. And had I read a summary of the character, my interest would be piqued. The idea of this "nobody" character able to wiggle his way and become Ning Yi's darkest nemesis is a very interesting premise. But his presence on screen just totally kills it for me. Maybe it is his lines. Or how he had no charm at all. I don't really know for sure. But the prince of Yue was more interesting to me despite the fact that I didn't like his character at all. I abhor him, but that is a win for the actor because that is something he should instigate to the audience. There is just something missing with the Prince of Wei, why I can't feel anything for him at all except "oh you again?". 

 

For some reason, instead of being angry at him for what he has done to create disruption, I instead feel insulted for Ning Yi, that he was going against this person... as someone stated a similar analogy, it is like having the last boss turn out to be a slime mob, it simply just deals 9999 damage. How odd.

 

You know what. I also just realized that even Ning Yi was not able to muster enough emotion to really hate Ning Qi. When his mother died, he mainly blamed the Bloody Pagoda for it. And then at the end, when Ning Qi was sent to prison after all the pain he caused Ning Yi, he didn't really feel like avenging himself. He basically didn't really care for the guy.

 

Maybe that is the entire reason. Maybe I was so in-tuned to Ning Yi's feelings that the fact that he never really had any deep feelings for Ning Qi, hatred or otherwise made me not care too. Now that I think about it, Ning Sheng was also not as interesting as Ning Chuan to me. His mother, Consort Chang was actually a more interesting character to me. But the fact that Ning Yi was actively scheming against him made me look up to Ning Sheng. He was an adversary. Ning Yi basically let the prince of Wei do anything... which is prolly why I couldn't care less about him.

^^ That 7th prince is no fun indeed, but I notice, from the first time he enters the court , he’s paying attention, he is low key observing NingYi. 

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On 10/19/2018 at 4:26 PM, Aude Bonnaire said:

hi everyone,

I'm new on this forum and Netflix brought me to the Rise of the Phoenixes. I watch with the French subtitles. I'm a TV Show sucker, even more for romance, and I like Asian dramas : I used to watch dozen of J-dramas per year, and maybe 2 or 3 K-dramas. This is my first C-drama.

The costumes and the photography is breathtaking, the acting is really good, the music a ear-delight.

I've watched so far 43 episodes in something like 2 weeks and I'm highly addicted.

  Reveal hidden contents

I decided it was time to go to bed when the Emperor agreed to "punish" FZW by sending her to Minhai as a Royal Investigator with NY

 

I need a happy ending or I'll be devasted for days :sweatingbullets:

 

I like how NY and FZW evolve, as people but also in their relationship, which may seem inexistent for Westerners like me (except that my experience of Asian Dramas helped me see some signs).

 

Regarding the topic about the princes, I don't even recall the face of Ning Yan :phew: I wished there would have been more princesses also.

Correct me if I'm wrong, by order (I love family trees):

 

Ning Chuan

Ning Sheng

Ning Qiao

4

Ning Yan

Ning Yi

Ning Qi

8

9

Ning Ji (Haven't seen this character yet).

 

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Consort Chang says that she had 3 kids, 2 boys and 1 girl, but Ning sheng is the youngest of them since she's been barren since she gave him birth. Ning Chuan is born of the Empress, so that means that if a prince dies, they all move up one rank or what ? :wacko:

 

Will we see the missing princes ?

hi, I think I heard the emperor said Shaoning is the 5th child and NingYan is 4th child, so Shaoning literally NingYi big sis, so we miss prince number 8 and 9. ^^ 

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10 hours ago, Pollen Ainne said:

WOW! I wrote an essay!!!

Heh, you did write an essay there. But it's good. Much better reading this stuff than lots of 'Wow, Chen Kun, he is so hot. Whenever he arches his eyebrows, it makes me swoon.' Lol.

 

Poor HZ! He's so uneducated in Tiansheng's ways. Always about to offend the Emperor. Unable to answer FZW's riddles. He seems to be a catch in his own kingdom (handsome, princely, skilled) since Liu Mudan's sister is obsessed with him, but he's an outsider at Tiansheng's court and hence seen at a disadvantage by the court ladies. Even FZW says 'Who would want to be admired by someone who looks like him?' But yes, he's certainly much more consistent with his public displays of affection towards FZW. From the get go, he wants to make her his concubine, and this lusty regard grows into a more respectful love. And I think FZW learns to appreciate this. She calls him her 'safe harbour' (not sure of the wording exactly)? 

 

And it was nice to see him in his own element in Jinshi, where he was admired, respected, and loved by his people. It would have been interesting for the show to do a role reversing here, where NY, a Tiansheng prince, would be shown at a disadvantage, but there wasn't enough scope for that kind of thing in the latter episodes.

 

As for Gu Nanyi, yeah, you're right: very little romantic undertone at all. Though, sometimes I get confused in some scenes, like the show wasn't sure what direction FZQ and GNY's relationship should be taking. Like what was he doing, sleeping on her bed, and then rolling over to look at her look at the moon? Is there more romance between these two characters in the book? Did the show make a decision somewhere along the line to tone down the hint of romance between these two so that they could focus on NY and HZ? That final scene with GNY having a flashback; what was that? I wonder what happened to him in the end. So messy! 

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I'm on ep 19 and the loyalty is killing me :(!!! So sad so many innocent lives were lost. Wait, Ning Yi knows that ZW is a woman right? Because he already saw her as the fake princess Qiu that was arranged to marry him?? Or am I missing something?

Nini and Chen Kun's chemistry is so simple, yet very loving and longingly towards each other. They have awesome chemistry even in the short scenes that they spend looking at each other, and the sadness that they goes through losing people that are in their circle. Oh lord, Ning Chun is laughable and a coward!! I cannot wait to see he suffer his misfortune soon!! In a way, the plot reminds me of NIF, not to compared but I see some similarities, like how Ning Yi pretends to be clueless and weak, but is plotting behind, and also Headmaster pretends to work for Ning Chun, but really he works for Ning Yi?? Also, NY and ZW reminds me of Romeo and Juliet, knowing so far that NY killed her father????? I still don't believe this, and that something new will come up to change the storyline??? If he really killed her father, then they can never be together, because she wont be able to forgive him??? Also, this is called TROP, does this mean that ZW is going to be a Queen to turn over Tiansheng's kingdom?? I'm confused why the Gu guard keep reffering ZW as a he?? Ahh, is it because at this point, they don't know that their brother have a daughter, and not a son??

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1 hour ago, morganian said:

Heh, you did write an essay there. But it's good. Much better reading this stuff than lots of 'Wow, Chen Kun, he is so hot. Whenever he arches his eyebrows, it makes me swoon.' Lol.

 

Poor HZ! He's so uneducated in Tiansheng's ways. Always about to offend the Emperor. Unable to answer FZW's riddles. He seems to be a catch in his own kingdom (handsome, princely, skilled) since Liu Mudan's sister is obsessed with him, but he's an outsider at Tiansheng's court and hence seen at a disadvantage by the court ladies. Even FZW says 'Who would want to be admired by someone who looks like him?' But yes, he's certainly much more consistent with his public displays of affection towards FZW. From the get go, he wants to make her his concubine, and this lusty regard grows into a more respectful love. And I think FZW learns to appreciate this. She calls him her 'safe harbour' (not sure of the wording exactly)? 

 

And it was nice to see him in his own element in Jinshi, where he was admired, respected, and loved by his people. It would have been interesting for the show to do a role reversing here, where NY, a Tiansheng prince, would be shown at a disadvantage, but there wasn't enough scope for that kind of thing in the latter episodes.

 

As for Gu Nanyi, yeah, you're right: very little romantic undertone at all. Though, sometimes I get confused in some scenes, like the show wasn't sure what direction FZQ and GNY's relationship should be taking. Like what was he doing, sleeping on her bed, and then rolling over to look at her look at the moon? Is there more romance between these two characters in the book? Did the show make a decision somewhere along the line to tone down the hint of romance between these two so that they could focus on NY and HZ? That final scene with GNY having a flashback; what was that? I wonder what happened to him in the end. So messy! 

But but but... Chen Kun is so hot. lol!

 

To be honest, I think Ning Yi is the one who is hot rather than Chen Kun. But he made the character come to life so he deserves credit! 

 

I would love to have the Jinshi arc expanded, but seems to me Ning Yi is not out of his element even in there. I think even the women of Jinshi would be intrigued by him. Helian Zheng was barely able to do anything to regain his throne at all. Ning Yi and Zhiwei did all the work for him. Ning Yi in his hunting gear lounging in his chair... I think some beauty is just universal, he has mastered the art of "lounging". :D

 

As far as I know about Gu Nanyi in the books, is that it was a one sided love on his part, and he probably didn't realize it until a lot later? I haven't read the books so I am just going with what I have read others say. I am glad they didn't really develop anything romantic between them. Too much love interest can get quite bothersome. But I really hate the fact that Gu Nanyi got a flashback on the last episode and we don't get a montage of Zhiwei and Ning Yi. Whoever cut that film was out of his mind. I usually do not like flashbacks since I binge watch, but dang, there are times when flashbacks are necessary! They should have kept the scene with Ning Yi and Zhiwei in the mountains pretending they were together. I keep on getting on my rant mode every time I think of the ending. lol

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1 hour ago, rosierosie said:

I'm on ep 19 and the loyalty is killing me :(!!! So sad so many innocent lives were lost. Wait, Ning Yi knows that ZW is a woman right? Because he already saw her as the fake princess Qiu that was arranged to marry him?? Or am I missing something?

Nini and Chen Kun's chemistry is so simple, yet very loving and longingly towards each other. They have awesome chemistry even in the short scenes that they spend looking at each other, and the sadness that they goes through losing people that are in their circle. Oh lord, Ning Chun is laughable and a coward!! I cannot wait to see he suffer his misfortune soon!! In a way, the plot reminds me of NIF, not to compared but I see some similarities, like how Ning Yi pretends to be clueless and weak, but is plotting behind, and also Headmaster pretends to work for Ning Chun, but really he works for Ning Yi?? Also, NY and ZW reminds me of Romeo and Juliet, knowing so far that NY killed her father????? I still don't believe this, and that something new will come up to change the storyline??? If he really killed her father, then they can never be together, because she wont be able to forgive him??? Also, this is called TROP, does this mean that ZW is going to be a Queen to turn over Tiansheng's kingdom?? I'm confused why the Gu guard keep reffering ZW as a he?? Ahh, is it because at this point, they don't know that their brother have a daughter, and not a son??

Yes, Ning Yi knows that Wei Zhi is Feng Zhiwei, because he was the one who encouraged her to enroll at Qingming Academy. And she is doing it for him to repay the favor of him saving her life. I really am gonna try NiF again.

 

And the problem doesn't seem to be her not being able to forgive him, but the fact that she promised her mother never to marry him, damning her mother's soul to eternal unrest if she does. It is kinda Romeo and Juliet actually, if Romeo and Juliet were smart, lol. And Ning Yi is the main character of the story so tRoP mostly refers to him. 

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26 minutes ago, Pollen Ainne said:

Yes, Ning Yi knows that Wei Zhi is Feng Zhiwei, because he was the one who encouraged her to enroll at Qingming Academy. And she is doing it for him to repay the favor of him saving her life. I really am gonna try NiF again.

 

And the problem doesn't seem to be her not being able to forgive him, but the fact that she promised her mother never to marry him, damning her mother's soul to eternal unrest if she does. It is kinda Romeo and Juliet actually, if Romeo and Juliet were smart, lol. And Ning Yi is the main character of the story so tRoP mostly refers to him. 

Thanks for your input :)!!! Yes!! You should give NIF a try, I waited two years, and I watched it this summer and boy, it was amazing!!! 

 

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54 minutes ago, Pollen Ainne said:

But but but... Chen Kun is so hot. lol!

 

To be honest, I think Ning Yi is the one who is hot rather than Chen Kun. But he made the character come to life so he deserves credit! 

 

I would love to have the Jinshi arc expanded, but seems to me Ning Yi is not out of his element even in there. I think even the women of Jinshi would be intrigued by him. 

I think you’re right there. I’ve been watching Chen Kun/Nini movies to fill the void post-series. So far, I’ve watched Beautiful Accident, Mojin, Love on Credit, Legend of Wu Kong and Suddenly 17 and none of them are doing it for me. Will still try to watch Painted Skin, Mulan, etc for completeness but rewatching RotP is much more fun. Though Chen Kun’s upcoming project The Weary Poet (?) sounds kind of cool; I must try to see that. 

 

Yeah, NY seems to be just as canny as ever in Jinshi. I guess I am looking for patterns/themes with the second watching.

 

Another event that is mirrored is drug-induced madness. Both NY and FZW develop some form of madness. Interesting how both hurt the people they love during these periods: NY does this physically and FZW does it verbally. It’s probably just a plot-device but I also want it to mean something thematically. I keep on wanting to make the series more intellectual than it already is. I am itching to put forth a quote from the series and a ‘Discuss’ after...just like an English Literature essay exam. 

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4 hours ago, rosierosie said:

Thanks for your input :)!!! Yes!! You should give NIF a try, I waited two years, and I watched it this summer and boy, it was amazing!!! 

 

I tried watching it before. Will try again :D

 

4 hours ago, morganian said:

I think you’re right there. I’ve been watching Chen Kun/Nini movies to fill the void post-series. So far, I’ve watched Beautiful Accident, Mojin, Love on Credit, Legend of Wu Kong and Suddenly 17 and none of them are doing it for me. Will still try to watch Painted Skin, Mulan, etc for completeness but rewatching RotP is much more fun. Though Chen Kun’s upcoming project The Weary Poet (?) sounds kind of cool; I must try to see that. 

 

Yeah, NY seems to be just as canny as ever in Jinshi. I guess I am looking for patterns/themes with the second watching.

 

Another event that is mirrored is drug-induced madness. Both NY and FZW develop some form of madness. Interesting how both hurt the people they love during these periods: NY does this physically and FZW does it verbally. It’s probably just a plot-device but I also want it to mean something thematically. I keep on wanting to make the series more intellectual than it already is. I am itching to put forth a quote from the series and a ‘Discuss’ after...just like an English Literature essay exam. 

I have tried watching Chen Kun movies, I saw Beautiful Accident but he was barely there. Love on Credit was kinda cute but he didn't have much parts either. I also tried Lost in 1949 and enjoyed it until at one point where someone annoying appeared and I got so annoyed with the succeeding event that I wanted to throw a shoe on my screen. But Chen Kun was great there too. I saw Snow Girl and the Dark Crystal, boy was he so different there. I love the fact that he doesn't need to be cute in his movies. I don't wanna watch Painted Skin and Mulan... not even Chen Kun can make me watch that. Re-watching tRoP is definitely the best.

 

Unfortunately, what Zhiwei did, left more of a scar especially since Ning Yi had been planning to drop his title. It was the most inopportune time. The old Ning Yi would have had enough arrogance to ignore it. What is so heart-wrenching to me is that after the "kiss" underwater, this two people never connected on the same level again. They might as well have drowned.

 

Thematically, both events serve a purpose. Ning Yi's madness lead to Zhiwei's "death" and Zhiwei's madness lead to Ning Yi's "death". Unfortunately they didn't survive both.

 

 

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14 hours ago, Lottalove Lottalove said:

hi, I think I heard the emperor said Shaoning is the 5th child and NingYan is 4th child, so Shaoning literally NingYi big sis, so we miss prince number 8 and 9. ^^ 

no no. Ning Yan is specifically called 5th prince. Shaoning calls Ning Qi, the 7th prince big brother (when he was being nice to her), she's at least younger than him. In the book, she's the youngest and explicitly calls 10th prince big bro too. They don't refer to each other by titles in the drama so it's not confirmed but I think it's somewhat assumed?

 

22 hours ago, Pollen Ainne said:

I think Helian Zheng might have had a chance of winning Zhiwei simply because he treated her more like an equal (later on) than Ning Yi did. And I don't think Zhiwei was averse to someone who was open to their feelings as she was quite open with her affections herself and had been baiting Ning Yi to open up.

I'd agree if they kept Helian Zheng's characterisation of straightforward but devoted till the end. When Zhiwei was trying to go back to Tiansheng (ep 64? 65?), he got very upset, which is entirely fair. The scene started out fine but then his chauvinism started coming out, he wish that she would let him handle it, let him check what's going on in Tiansheng. That's not Zhiwei, and she said so as much. I do like this part since it humanised him but then they try to humanised him more where he's selfish and does a really dumb thing, so I just pretend that doesn't exist. I think they can overcome not always thinking at the same speed or along the same lines (although Zhiwei would lose so much fun and I don't want her to settle), but not when he doesn't understand what's vital to her.

 

11 hours ago, morganian said:

As for Gu Nanyi, yeah, you're right: very little romantic undertone at all. Though, sometimes I get confused in some scenes, like the show wasn't sure what direction FZQ and GNY's relationship should be taking. Like what was he doing, sleeping on her bed, and then rolling over to look at her look at the moon? Is there more romance between these two characters in the book? Did the show make a decision somewhere along the line to tone down the hint of romance between these two so that they could focus on NY and HZ? That final scene with GNY having a flashback; what was that? I wonder what happened to him in the end. So messy! 

The scene is from the book, but even then it's not meant to be romantic. Gu Nanyi doesn't understand the world and how people social, it's Zhiwei who taught him that. He has a lot of contemplative scenes in drama, in the one you are talking about, I think he was just sort of musing "this girl is weird. mhmmm". He's essentially the second lead in the book by sheer amount of scenes (he was by her side for 12 years) and like in the drama, he's her family and sort of like her support network at times. He's romantically interested in her in the novel, but to him, it's not just romance, she's his life and his world, basically? damn this sounds really cheesy. But Zhiwei was never romantically interested in him. I'm worried about him in the drama too, he understood where she's going, I think but he's going to be so heartbroken and he has no one else.

 

Re:Chen Kun, he tends to play supporting character (or he's the main character but the focus is on the female lead) in lot of the well known movies he's in, he likes to challenge himself so they are all pretty different. Maybe also try Flying Sword of Dragon's Gate? I think that's one of his more beloved role. His dramas have some memorable characters but I doubt they are translated. Did you try Ni ni's debut movie, The Flowers of War? The general consensus seems to be she did fairly average in terms of roles after that.

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1 hour ago, skibbies said:

I'd agree if they kept Helian Zheng's characterisation of straightforward but devoted till the end. When Zhiwei was trying to go back to Tiansheng (ep 64? 65?), he got very upset, which is entirely fair. The scene started out fine but then his chauvinism started coming out, he wish that she would let him handle it, let him check what's going on in Tiansheng. That's not Zhiwei, and she said so as much. I do like this part since it humanised him but then they try to humanised him more where he's selfish and does a really dumb thing, so I just pretend that doesn't exist. I think they can overcome not always thinking at the same speed or along the same lines (although Zhiwei would lose so much fun and I don't want her to settle), but not when he doesn't understand what's vital to her.

I forgive him. When the woman you love keeps on thinking of another man, you might think you can accept it at first but you will get fed up with it. And I think Zhiwei never really gave Helian Zheng a chance. She only kept appearances on the outside as his queen to not humiliate him, which is what Ning Yi saw. But later on, when he aimed a bow at her... that I do not forgive him for, even if he paid for it with his life. I know he had no intention of shooting but his intentions were bad. I admired him more when he became angry and decided to divorce her. He should not have taken that back.

 

1 hour ago, skibbies said:

I'm worried about him in the drama too, he understood where she's going, I think but he's going to be so heartbroken and he has no one else.

For some reason, I am quite indifferent as to what happens to Gu Nanyi.

 

1 hour ago, skibbies said:

Re:Chen Kun, he tends to play supporting character (or he's the main character but the focus is on the female lead) in lot of the well known movies he's in, he likes to challenge himself so they are all pretty different. Maybe also try Flying Sword of Dragon's Gate? I think that's one of his more beloved role. His dramas have some memorable characters but I doubt they are translated. Did you try Ni ni's debut movie, The Flowers of War? The general consensus seems to be she did fairly average in terms of roles after that.

I saw FSoDG before I knew who Chen Kun was (I liked Jet Li). I didn't know it was the same actor at all until I checked his movie list. He is a better actor than Jet Li that is for sure. lol

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On 10/29/2018 at 8:47 AM, mspilgrims said:

One thing in particular made me wonder though: the translation of some dialogues. I mean, does it have a sense between adults the word "like" in a confession?  "I like you" is a bit childish or for a teenage first love, imho. In the adult world, I'd rather say "I'm in love with you", "I've fallen for you" or simply "I love you". What do you think?

 

I agree with @skibbies previous comment that, like in Japanese, it's a cultural thing. I don't speak Chinese, but I speak Japanese. It isn't really childish thing to say "I like you" because adults in these two cultures hardly use the word "love." It goes "unspoken" for the most part.

 

There were multiple translators for Netflix subs, but I don't find this to be a translation error like how "little civet cat/little racoon" was translated as "imposter" in the earlier episodes. (That was one of the cases where they should have translated literally but didn't.)

 

The fact that they are both "testing the waters" makes "like" appropriate at this point in time. Ning Yi barely recognized his feelings for her as romantic (guy was super in denial all this time although we sure as hell knew better) as he was too focused on everything else. Same goes for Zhiwei.

 

 

 

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7 hours ago, sonosong said:

 

 

I agree with @skibbies previous comment that, like in Japanese, it's a cultural thing. I don't speak Chinese, but I speak Japanese. It isn't really childish thing to say "I like you" because adults in these two cultures hardly use the word "love." It goes "unspoken" for the most part.

 

There were multiple translators for Netflix subs, but I don't find this to be a translation error like how "little civet cat/little racoon" was translated as "imposter" in the earlier episodes. (That was one of the cases where they should have translated literally but didn't.)

 

The fact that they are both "testing the waters" makes "like" appropriate at this point in time. Ning Yi barely recognized his feelings for her as romantic (guy was super in denial all this time although we sure as hell knew better) as he was too focused on everything else. Same goes for Zhiwei.

 

 

 

I agree with you. I don't think I've ever heard anyone say I love you in Chinese in real life. 

 

It's kind of hard to translate 狸猫 to english. For some reason everyone translates it as civet cat/raccoon cat, but in Chinese it just means a little cat or little leopard cat. There is a very popular Chinese legend where a consort substitutes the newborn son of a rival consort, who would be crown prince, for a skinned cat, causing the consort to be lose favor ad be locked up (kind of like Ning Yi's mother's situation). Ning Yi calls Zhiwei 狸猫 because in the beginning, she was an impostor in the sense that she was assuming the identity of her cousin. It must have been kind of weird for people watching the subtitles though. 

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17 hours ago, skibbies said:

no no. Ning Yan is specifically called 5th prince. Shaoning calls Ning Qi, the 7th prince big brother (when he was being nice to her), she's at least younger than him. In the book, she's the youngest and explicitly calls 10th prince big bro too. They don't refer to each other by titles in the drama so it's not confirmed but I think it's somewhat assumed?

 

I'd agree if they kept Helian Zheng's characterisation of straightforward but devoted till the end. When Zhiwei was trying to go back to Tiansheng (ep 64? 65?), he got very upset, which is entirely fair. The scene started out fine but then his chauvinism started coming out, he wish that she would let him handle it, let him check what's going on in Tiansheng. That's not Zhiwei, and she said so as much. I do like this part since it humanised him but then they try to humanised him more where he's selfish and does a really dumb thing, so I just pretend that doesn't exist. I think they can overcome not always thinking at the same speed or along the same lines (although Zhiwei would lose so much fun and I don't want her to settle), but not when he doesn't understand what's vital to her.

 

The scene is from the book, but even then it's not meant to be romantic. Gu Nanyi doesn't understand the world and how people social, it's Zhiwei who taught him that. He has a lot of contemplative scenes in drama, in the one you are talking about, I think he was just sort of musing "this girl is weird. mhmmm". He's essentially the second lead in the book by sheer amount of scenes (he was by her side for 12 years) and like in the drama, he's her family and sort of like her support network at times. He's romantically interested in her in the novel, but to him, it's not just romance, she's his life and his world, basically? damn this sounds really cheesy. But Zhiwei was never romantically interested in him. I'm worried about him in the drama too, he understood where she's going, I think but he's going to be so heartbroken and he has no one else.

 

Re:Chen Kun, he tends to play supporting character (or he's the main character but the focus is on the female lead) in lot of the well known movies he's in, he likes to challenge himself so they are all pretty different. Maybe also try Flying Sword of Dragon's Gate? I think that's one of his more beloved role. His dramas have some memorable characters but I doubt they are translated. Did you try Ni ni's debut movie, The Flowers of War? The general consensus seems to be she did fairly average in terms of roles after that.

 

17 hours ago, skibbies said:

no no. Ning Yan is specifically called 5th prince. Shaoning calls Ning Qi, the 7th prince big brother (when he was being nice to her), she's at least younger than him. In the book, she's the youngest and explicitly calls 10th prince big bro too. They don't refer to each other by titles in the drama so it's not confirmed but I think it's somewhat assumed?

 

I'd agree if they kept Helian Zheng's characterisation of straightforward but devoted till the end. When Zhiwei was trying to go back to Tiansheng (ep 64? 65?), he got very upset, which is entirely fair. The scene started out fine but then his chauvinism started coming out, he wish that she would let him handle it, let him check what's going on in Tiansheng. That's not Zhiwei, and she said so as much. I do like this part since it humanised him but then they try to humanised him more where he's selfish and does a really dumb thing, so I just pretend that doesn't exist. I think they can overcome not always thinking at the same speed or along the same lines (although Zhiwei would lose so much fun and I don't want her to settle), but not when he doesn't understand what's vital to her.

 

The scene is from the book, but even then it's not meant to be romantic. Gu Nanyi doesn't understand the world and how people social, it's Zhiwei who taught him that. He has a lot of contemplative scenes in drama, in the one you are talking about, I think he was just sort of musing "this girl is weird. mhmmm". He's essentially the second lead in the book by sheer amount of scenes (he was by her side for 12 years) and like in the drama, he's her family and sort of like her support network at times. He's romantically interested in her in the novel, but to him, it's not just romance, she's his life and his world, basically? damn this sounds really cheesy. But Zhiwei was never romantically interested in him. I'm worried about him in the drama too, he understood where she's going, I think but he's going to be so heartbroken and he has no one else.

 

Re:Chen Kun, he tends to play supporting character (or he's the main character but the focus is on the female lead) in lot of the well known movies he's in, he likes to challenge himself so they are all pretty different. Maybe also try Flying Sword of Dragon's Gate? I think that's one of his more beloved role. His dramas have some memorable characters but I doubt they are translated. Did you try Ni ni's debut movie, The Flowers of War? The general consensus seems to be she did fairly average in terms of roles after that.

hi, thank you for the correction, perhaps I misread the translation, anyway do you read the Chinese novel version? That’s cool,,I wish there would be English translation very soon, I can’t find it even in Amazon ,, that’s s depressing  :(  

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13 hours ago, tendrilsofwind said:

It's kind of hard to translate 狸猫 to english. For some reason everyone translates it as civet cat/raccoon cat, but in Chinese it just means a little cat or little leopard cat. There is a very popular Chinese legend where a consort substitutes the newborn son of a rival consort, who would be crown prince, for a skinned cat, causing the consort to be lose favor ad be locked up (kind of like Ning Yi's mother's situation). Ning Yi calls Zhiwei 狸猫 because in the beginning, she was an impostor in the sense that she was assuming the identity of her cousin. It must have been kind of weird for people watching the subtitles though. 

Thanks so much for the clarification. That makes a lot of sense. In Japanese the word 狸/tanuki means raccoon, but also someone sly and sneaky. So in that context, she was a bit of an imposter. But tbf Zhiwei really does resemble a civet cat. She's so long and slender! haha.

 

By the way, I started re-watching the series again on my own, but my sister caught a glimpse of the Princes' elaborate costumes and so I had to restart at Episode 1 (which I didn't mind.) And then her husband decided to join us as well, so we had to restart again at Episode 1 LOL. This is the first time her husband is actually sitting down to watch any costume drama with us and is actually invested in the characters. He usually prefers stuff on HBO or American TV. I think he even enjoys it a lot more than my sister does because he went to work in the evening but forced us to wait until he came home so we could all watch it together. We're now on Episode 15.


The even weirder thing is, my nephew (18) joined us last night too. He honestly couldn't tell whether Ni Ni was a girl or a guy. He guessed correctly that she was dressed as a man eventually. But what made me laugh so hard was that he was seriously confused about Bai Jingting's sexual identity as well. I was like, "You cannot be serious." Eventually when he heard Gu Nanyi speaking, he was like, "What! That's a dude!" 

 

Weirdest experience I'm having ever because none of the men in my family like watching Chinese costume dramas. They always thought it was "meant for women." Whatever that means. I'd like to think that  it's because Chen Kun has that knife-blade edge to him while acting. There's just a bit of dark and crazy in those eyes to make even men fall under his spell.

 

Also, the scene when Zhiwei meets up with Ning Yi after burying the wooden figure for Prince Yan and she kept cracking up even though Ning Yi's all serious and trying to shake some sense into her, like, "Woman! Do you realize you might die?" was adorable to them for some reason. My sister and I thought it was cute too, but we were preferred the one where they were in his carriage and he tells her she looks hideous when she cries lol. No, actually, what I loved was the subtle nuances of the characters in that scene. Ning Yi peeked and noticed she had packed the outer-garment he made, and Zhiwei realizes this and shyly thanks him for it before putting it on him. So we have our differences.

 

Also, my sister makes clothing, and she was so impressed by how detailed and ornate the costumes are. She loves how they don't shy away from decorating the other Princes as well. And now that I've seen these first 15 episodes more than three times, I just can't help but be in awe of the beautiful sets. I think Ning Yan, Prince of Zhao, had the prettiest room of them all. I'd live in it.

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On 10/31/2018 at 2:57 AM, Pollen Ainne said:

I forgive him. When the woman you love keeps on thinking of another man, you might think you can accept it at first but you will get fed up with it. And I think Zhiwei never really gave Helian Zheng a chance. She only kept appearances on the outside as his queen to not humiliate him, which is what Ning Yi saw. But later on, when he aimed a bow at her... that I do not forgive him for, even if he paid for it with his life. I know he had no intention of shooting but his intentions were bad. I admired him more when he became angry and decided to divorce her. He should not have taken that back.

 

For some reason, I am quite indifferent as to what happens to Gu Nanyi.

It make sense he'd take it back though, since that was the tangible link he had with her, and he was desperately holding onto it. It was kind of suicidal move, since he knew Ning Yi would see him and he would die first, I know it's still putting her at risk but yknow. Either way it's a super dumb move and that's not how you get her to remember you! I would have taken it that he waver at the suggestion, but decide not to, then died anyways because of other people's scheme, it'd have similar effect. We didn't really the "mystery" surrounding his death since it lead to more misunderstanding that wasn't dwelled on much, so idk what that was for except making the audience experience worse.

 

Gu Nanyi doesn't get enough scenes for you to really care for him. He's a human background a lot, and gets written out of the plot when Zhiwei needs to be in danger, which is kind of sad. We basically saw his post character development but none of how it happened. He has some really good lines! Since I'm team Zhiwei and he's her support network, he gets lot more points from me.

 

16 hours ago, tendrilsofwind said:

It's kind of hard to translate 狸猫 to english. For some reason everyone translates it as civet cat/raccoon cat, but in Chinese it just means a little cat or little leopard cat. There is a very popular Chinese legend where a consort substitutes the newborn son of a rival consort, who would be crown prince, for a skinned cat, causing the consort to be lose favor ad be locked up (kind of like Ning Yi's mother's situation). Ning Yi calls Zhiwei 狸猫 because in the beginning, she was an impostor in the sense that she was assuming the identity of her cousin. It must have been kind of weird for people watching the subtitles though. 

I think it got translated to racoon because the Japanese tanuki gets (mis?)translated to 狸猫 and is frequently translated as raccoon in English. It was my first instinct when I was thinking up a translation too :sweatingbullets: this case is a good case where footnotes would be helpful, but I've only ever seen them in fansubs, not official subs.

 

8 hours ago, Lottalove Lottalove said:

hi, thank you for the correction, perhaps I misread the translation, anyway do you read the Chinese novel version? That’s cool,,I wish there would be English translation very soon, I can’t find it even in Amazon ,, that’s s depressing  :(  

Yeah I read the novel, I read that first and then found out there's a drama and followed it from broadcast. Web novels aren't popular enough to be picked up by official companies yet, so it's heavily reliant on fan translation. They get better translators than cdrama do though. Legend of Fu Yao which is set in the same universe is being translated so maybe they'll pick this up later? I don't know. This novel is on the longer side, 1.3mil characters so it's a monstrous task to translate. I think someone on tumblr is partially translating it? Skipping all the appearance description and probably some setting description too. I should probably note that the novel is very different beast from the drama, the characterisation, relationship dynamic and some of the central conflict.

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2 hours ago, skibbies said:

It make sense he'd take it back though, since that was the tangible link he had with her, and he was desperately holding onto it. It was kind of suicidal move, since he knew Ning Yi would see him and he would die first, I know it's still putting her at risk but yknow. Either way it's a super dumb move and that's not how you get her to remember you! I would have taken it that he waver at the suggestion, but decide not to, then died anyways because of other people's scheme, it'd have similar effect. We didn't really the "mystery" surrounding his death since it lead to more misunderstanding that wasn't dwelled on much, so idk what that was for except making the audience experience worse.

Actually, it would have made more sense for me if he had moved on. He was no longer just prince, he was the King of Jinshi. It made no sense to me that as King, he traveled all the way to Tiansheng just to get Zhiwei back. Had they been real lovers, I would shrug it off. But for some girl who was totally in love with someone else? Who is that masochistic and stupid really? Where is his pride? Tiansheng and Jinshi might be at peace with each other but I think it would be some major political move to have the King of another country step into foreign soil. And he does that for a woman who will never love him in return? Who is Zhiwei? Helen of Troy? lol.

 

And then his character is dumbed down further by getting used as a pawn by the 4th Prince of Dacheng. Although he was playful and stubborn in love, I thought Helian Zheng was a person of honor and was actually a responsible person in the inside. He accepted marriage to the Princess of Tiansheng thinking he was marrying Shaoning. That was pretty mature of him. At that time, he thought of his Kingdom first. 

 

But I understand why the writers wanted him dead. It paves the way for Ning Yi getting his united Empire. But still...

 

It's really painful saying negative things about this show when I love it so much. Unfortunately, love is not blind. :D

 

2 hours ago, skibbies said:

Gu Nanyi doesn't get enough scenes for you to really care for him. He's a human background a lot, and gets written out of the plot when Zhiwei needs to be in danger, which is kind of sad. We basically saw his post character development but none of how it happened. He has some really good lines! Since I'm team Zhiwei and he's her support network, he gets lot more points from me.

Maybe because you read the novel, you have more perspective. I too would want more character development on the characters surrounding Zhiwei. But if I were to choose characters to expound on, I would prefer to see more of Hua Qiong and develop a relationship with her and Yan Huaishi. I kinda liked Gu Nanyi as a background character. He was loyal and he supported Zhiwei on who she loved and who she didn't. That was enough for me.

 

 

 

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3 hours ago, sonosong said:

By the way, I started re-watching the series again on my own, but my sister caught a glimpse of the Princes' elaborate costumes and so I had to restart at Episode 1 (which I didn't mind.) And then her husband decided to join us as well, so we had to restart again at Episode 1 LOL. This is the first time her husband is actually sitting down to watch any costume drama with us and is actually invested in the characters. He usually prefers stuff on HBO or American TV. I think he even enjoys it a lot more than my sister does because he went to work in the evening but forced us to wait until he came home so we could all watch it together. We're now on Episode 15.


The even weirder thing is, my nephew (18) joined us last night too. He honestly couldn't tell whether Ni Ni was a girl or a guy. He guessed correctly that she was dressed as a man eventually. But what made me laugh so hard was that he was seriously confused about Bai Jingting's sexual identity as well. I was like, "You cannot be serious." Eventually when he heard Gu Nanyi speaking, he was like, "What! That's a dude!" 

 

Weirdest experience I'm having ever because none of the men in my family like watching Chinese costume dramas. They always thought it was "meant for women." Whatever that means. I'd like to think that  it's because Chen Kun has that knife-blade edge to him while acting. There's just a bit of dark and crazy in those eyes to make even men fall under his spell.

 

Also, the scene when Zhiwei meets up with Ning Yi after burying the wooden figure for Prince Yan and she kept cracking up even though Ning Yi's all serious and trying to shake some sense into her, like, "Woman! Do you realize you might die?" was adorable to them for some reason. My sister and I thought it was cute too, but we were preferred the one where they were in his carriage and he tells her she looks hideous when she cries lol. No, actually, what I loved was the subtle nuances of the characters in that scene. Ning Yi peeked and noticed she had packed the outer-garment he made, and Zhiwei realizes this and shyly thanks him for it before putting it on him. So we have our differences.

My little brother, who never watched any Chinese or Korean drama ever got hooked into it as well. I was re-watching from episode 1 and he was shaking his head at seeing I was watching the same show again. I gave him my headphones so he can try and see what it is about. Ning Yi was not even at the scene. It was about the 3 princes talking about what his release from prison implies for them. And he was like "That's enough, I'm gonna watch this show." He is not done watching yet but it's all we talk about during breakfast. 

 

This show is really stellar. The fact that the romance is kept at minimum makes guys enjoy it because they don't feel it's too cheesy. I still haven't convinced my boyfriend of watching it, and probably never will because I am too obsessed with Ning Yi at the moment for him to even want to see the character at all. Maybe when I mellow down he will give it a chance. lol

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